Pennies in the sand

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Action and Adventure  |  House: Booksie Classic

This is an adventurous short story of finding hope during low times. Written as a descriptive narrative. Tray stopped by the beach on his way into town. He was feeling depressed and hoped nature would cheer him up. It was almost winter and there were not many people in this remote area. He met some girls and found some money on the way out.
The combination of the two gave him hope again.

There was still plenty of daylight left to burn. For the sun was to descend a quarter way down and off into the horizon. There was a lone highway running nearby. Its stretch spans as far as you can go that way, and all the way to the other side past the beach. There are some beautiful mountains in between. Though not quite as beautiful as this beach... The sound of the highway merges into the sound of the waves and ocean spray. A little way off the side of the road and you’re there. The ocean. Its white sands invite you to relish in its beauty.

It also invited Tray. He had been driving for quite a while and was on less than half a tank when he saw the old sign. It read. (Beach, Next Right). The nearest civilization was an hour away, so he decided to stop here. Maybe he could go down and check out the water, perhaps this would ease his troubled soul. So he turned in on the old access road to the edge of the world. This is where folks from all over come to see the beach, though it’s out of season now. He pulled into the old parking lot and saw there were two vehicles. At the end of the row was a large dark blue sedan like that of a dutch counterpart. He gathered his composure and eased up, parking his aging sedan beside the other, a much nicer large silver SUV. This old lot has seen many storms. There are giant chunks of asphalt ruins and large stilts jetting out of the sand nearby. Its surrounded by big dunes and tall weeds. Maybe he could blend in well, despite things weren’t going very well in his life. He would play it cool to seem a bit normal. Like those here swimming or visiting.

Sandra was there playing volleyball with female friends down by the water’s edge. One was her closest friend while the others they had met there. Her little team was beginning to fall behind. The opposing girls were very strong and spoke with different accents. They wore robes and solid-piece suits with large sunglasses and accessories. Sandra had worn her hot pink bikini underneath a t-shirt. Her blonde-headed friend was shorter and donned a blue bikini with a silver belly ring. Waves bashed about as the surf sprayed. Decent clouds had cooperated with the sun's commanding shine and formed a restful canopy. For the girls’ game had been furious as they were exhausted and praised the cloud cover. The volleyball had been sent way up by a draining hit and signaled the end of their game. Sandra and her friend had come up short. Not feeling the defeat, she took off after the ball. It landed and rolled down the dune and toward Tray's path. He was in his own world staggering down the trail, his flip-flops sending sand everywhere. He was very depressed and had really bad anxiety. Suddenly a white volleyball landed in his path. He stumbled as he went over to the ball. He looked around as the sun came back out blinding him. That’s when he heard a woman’s voice .....

"Hi there". ..said Sandra as she jogged up

"Hey… Is.. this yours? " He stuttered She was standing close enough to smell her sunscreen and perfume. Her brown hair was up in a ponytail letting her bangs hang freely. Squinting from the bright sunshine he could see her pink top glowing through her T-shirt.

"Yes, we're playing over there"… she said pointing past the dunes as she leaned down and picked up the volleyball. Her bottom was only a pink-colored string revealing her lean tan legs.

" Oh, okay... cool"…  he responded with butterflies in his stomach. Sandra grabbed the ball smiling and took off back to her friends.

"Yikes," he thought aloud. As this little encounter had kinda brightened up his day.

Tray went about his way and made it down to the ocean. It was a sight to behold. Waves were pouring in endlessly. The salt permeated the air here. Sea Gulls set about in free flight chanting their iconic songs. The tide appeared to be changing, getting ready to come in for the evening. He wandered over to the salty surf and slipped off his sandals.

The sound of the girls laughing as they packed, blended into a tune that was fading with the oblivious seagulls whizzing about. The surf was cool and felt ensuring now after the brief encounter with the athlete. Maybe he was normal here after all and that mentality was not much of a serious issue out here. The wind picked up strong as waves bashed and rolled sending the growing surf further past him. He grabbed the base of his white button-up dress shirt, squeezing them together along with his sandals and light brown shorts. The bottoms were now getting wet as he tugged them up. A large group of clouds had gathered up above. It looked like they were trying to convince the sun to go away, as its' rays were breaching through the last bit of light. The closing blanket of clouds would surely extend into the night. The suns’ promise, the last trace outlined in dark purple.

Tray had ventured a good way down the shore. He turned around. The girls were now gone. The foaming waves were becoming rougher, louder, and even more ruthless. He continued for a bit then stopped and scanned around. He was all alone. A gut feeling came over him that maybe he shouldn’t be here. A gust of wind delivered foamy sea spray well pronounced by crashing waves. Tray stepped out of the water, fresh white sand finding its way up between his toes, squeaking with every step. He stared about wondering what all lies further down the shore. The horizon was fading, and it was getting a bit cooler when suddenly a giant wave had curled up and dropped its massive splash onto the infinite with drawing surf. He felt a rush of danger in his mix of emotions.

“Maybe it would be a good idea to turn back now?” He spoke aloud as if to an imaginary friend. With that assumption, Tray made the kindering trek back to the comfort of his old car.

He made it back to the parking lot to discover the others had gone. He was out of breath and shivering when he just happened to look down to find a wad of money! It was almost unnoticed as it only stood out beside the crusty white parking line. He was now ecstatic and too overwhelmed to count it. Tray leaped up and ran down to his car. There was a note stuck into his window when things couldn't get any better! It was from Sandra with her Telephone number! This sudden joy was forcing him to smile uncontrollably. He started up his old sedan and pulled off from there switching on his headlights as it was now dusk.

He took off on the highway and headed to town. Tray was on his way now. Focusing on the series of stripes in the center of his path on the lonely old highway. Holding the steering wheel steady, he plucked on the twilight sentinel as to gaze down and unfold the money. It revealed four twenties and some ones as he thumbed through it while gazing back at the roadway. The last clouds looked like two sides of warriors fading into the new dark of night. He was flattered by the girl earlier and now they could further a friendship! Plus he could refuel. Things were getting more hopeful. A short while later, Tray finally made it to town.

Submitted: November 17, 2021

© Copyright 2023 Jacob L. Ansley. All rights reserved.

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